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What to Expect and Prepare for During Your Kitchen Remodel

May 30, 2008
Remodeling a kitchen is an incredibly huge undertaking that involves a vast array of details to consider, decide on and oversee their implementation. If you're not prepared it can seem a bit overwhelming but here are some of the things you can expect and prepare for during your kitchen remodel.

Obviously the first step is to decide on the budget for your kitchen remodel. A good rule of thumb is about 15% of your home's current market value. For a more detailed breakdown of this you can check out my blog posting: Estimating Your Kitchen Remodeling Costs.

Keep in mind that there will ALWAYS be additional expenses so try to plan your budget on 80% of what you want your total budget to actually be. Your remodeling costs can be broken down into two main categories: the labor and installation that your contractor will charge and then the materials you select.

The materials you select will be your biggest remodeling costs and where you have the most choice and where you have the most probability of going over budget.

For this you can research information on the materials and their price ranges and this might also provide some ideas for planning your kitchen design and layout which is the next step in the process.

The planning of your kitchen design and layout is rarely a one step process so don't expect to get it exactly the way you want it all in one shot. It's a slowly evolving process which continually changes as you keep refining it. It's a good idea to sit with an idea for a while to see how it feels and fits with your kitchen designs. Make sure the layout flows with how you work in the kitchen.

After you've fine tuned your kitchen design and have it all planned out the next stage is ordering all the materials. Making sure you cover all the details and order everything needed is very important.

If you miss something and have to reorder it can delay your remodel quite a bit...sometimes by weeks and the last thing you want to do is give your contractor an opportunity to get busy on someone else's project during the delay and then put your project on the back burner although not all delays are controllable.

Another thing to be prepared for and expect are the unforeseen delays. In most any job there are unforeseen delays outside of the contractor's control that can, and usually do, come up...things like out of stock materials on backorder, faulty existing construction that's discovered that needs to be brought to code that couldn't be seen or known about until after walls or floors are opened up after the remodeling project has already gotten underway or weather delays to name of the few of the things that could cause delays outside the contractor's control.

The next stage involves demolition or deconstruction of the existing cabinets, countertops, appliances, flooring and lighting, depending on the extent of your remodel and what you've decided to replace. It's going to get really messy so just be prepared for that and just make peace with the fact that there's going to be dust everywhere even after the demolition process is finished. You can count on the whole place being dusty and messy for most of the duration of the construction.

Actually during the entire remodel you shouldn't expect neatness from your contractor. Believe it or not, it is sometimes a lot more efficient to leave things lying where they'll next be used. It will be messy so just prepare accordingly.

Just make sure you spell out in your contract that the jobsite will be cleaned up at the end of the job.

You can cover up furniture that you want to protect from dust and will need to either plan on eating out during the remodel or setting up a temporary kitchen elsewhere.

Also not expecting any problems to come up is unrealistic. There will be some problems. Weather delays, employees quitting, and more will happen. Having problems is okay, but it's not okay if the contractor can't work out the issues to your satisfaction.

Make sure you have a good working relationship with your contractor.

Knowing what to expect and prepare for during your kitchen renovation can make the entire remodel experience less overwhelming and stressful and it can even be a fun and exciting experience.
About the Author
Rebecca Noel is a licensed real estate agent and real estate investor. Remodeling houses and home improvement diy are her area of interest. Find out insider information that will save you $1000's on materials and help you get your remodeling projects done weeks faster at Remodeling Recon.
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